The Buyers Guide
Sources For Your Down Payment
The obvious source of money for your down payment is either your savings or the proceeds from the sale of a home you already own. But there are some other not so obvious sources. In recent years, for example, "parent power" has taken some new twists for first-time buyers.

Home Equity Loan
Parents often have considerable equity built up in their own homes-and many are tapping that asset through home equity loans to make a gift to the youngsters. Ask your tax advisor for current information. Often lenders will require a "gift letter" to verify that parents don't expect repayment.

Shared Equity/Profit-Sharing
In return for providing a part of the down payment, the parents (or another investor) share in the "profit" or net equity of the house when the home owners eventually sell it.

Life Insurance
If you have built up a cash value on your life insurance policy over the years, you may be able to borrow from your insurance company up to the amount of this accumulated cash value. Often they will even ask a more favorable interest rate than would be asked for other types of loans.

Stocks and Bonds
If you feel the market doesn't favor selling your stocks or bonds now, you may be able to secure a bank loan using your portfolio as security.

Company Profit Sharing or Savings Plan
Look into the possibility of withdrawing what you have in your profit sharing or savings plan account or borrowing against it, if your company has these programs.